Allergic reactions are common and range from irritating to life threatening.
Some are triggered by factors in our environment, medications we take or insect bites. Children are vulnerable to allergies and asthma. Your allergist can address all these conditions and more.
Adverse reactions to medicines are common and can complicate medical treatment.
Drug allergy reactions can range from mild side effects and rashes to severe,
immediate, life-threatening reactions such as stopped breathing or pulse. Allergy
consultation will ensure the safest and best course of action in each case.
Food allergy and adverse food reactions
Some children and adults have allergic sensitivity to certain foods. These allergies
usually cause vomiting, hives or difficulty breathing and can be life threatening in some
very sensitive people. One, some, or all of the symptoms can occur and a small amount
of the food can cause a reaction.
Food allergy diagnosis is made by an allergist after learning the patient's history. Skin
tests can confirm the allergy.
Treatment of food allergy is avoidance of the food. If you have a serious food allergy,
have an injectable epinephrine available in case the food would be accidentally eaten.
Insect sting reactions and allergy
Reactions to insect stings and bites range from localized swelling to violent, life threatening, total body reactions affecting breathing and pulse. Talk to your physician
about proper evaluation including skin testing when appropriate, to assure the best
treatment and course of action for the variable and complex reactions that can be
associated with insect stings and bites.
Pediatric and childhood asthma
Asthma is a condition in which the bronchial tubes of the lungs are more sensitive than normal. Bronchial tubes become swollen, produce extra mucus, and the muscles of the bronchial tubes tighten, decreasing the space in which air has to travel.
Asthma can occur at any age and is often triggered by common viral upper respiratory infections. Asthmatic children have nighttime cough, cough with running and playing, and may cough to the point of vomiting during the worst episodes. The severity of asthma varies. It is a nuisance in some children and life threatening in others. Our understanding of asthma has improved, and successful treatment can be achieved in the vast majority of children with asthma.
Goals of asthma treatment:
Minimize chronic symptoms, including night-time symptoms
Avoid needing to put limitations on activities
Minimize need for short relief inhalers
Minimize or eliminate need for emergency room visits
Minimize or eliminate need for hospitalization
Minimize or eliminate adverse effects from medicine
Anyone who suffers from allergies can tell you how miserable it is.
Whether your child has a dust mite or ragweed allergy, or is allergic to mold or pollen,
we can help. Our board-certified pediatric allergists offer the latest treatments for
eliminating or limiting the effects of both indoor and outdoor allergens.
Nasal polyps are benign (not cancerous) growths of the nasal mucosal lining. They
usually occur in both sides of the nose, and their cause is unknown. They are often
found in association with asthma, aspirin sensitivity and sinusitis. They often recur despite treatment.
Hives, chronic urticaria and angioedema
Hives (urticaria) are itchy red swollen skin lesions that look and often feel like mosquito bites. Each lesion may appear and disappear quickly. It is common to have overlapping clusters or crops of lesions.
Approximately 20 percent of people will have hives at sometime during their life. Hives caused by isolated episodes may occur from medications, foods and sometimes from inhaled allergens. Some hives are caused by physical stimuli such as stroking the skin (dermographism), temperature elevation (from exercise, fever or emotional stress), cold, sunlight or insect stings.
Approximately 80 percent of people with daily ongoing (chronic) hives have no identifiable cause. It is known that certain things like aspirin-like drugs can aggravate or cause hives. Hives are treated with antihistamines. When severe, they are treated with steroids.
Angioedema is swelling of the deeper skin that can sometimes cause temporary grotesque changes in the eyelids, lips, feet and other body parts. It may appear at the same time as hives. After one or two days angioedema normally disappears. In rare cases, it is an emergency because of swelling in the airway. Causes of angioedema are similar to those of hives.
In rare instances, angioedema maybe inherited. Treatment of angioedema also is similar to that of hives. Generally antihistamines are used for treatment. Stronger drugs are used if the swelling affects breathing.